Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Crucial link in immune development and regulation unearthed

Date:
October 14, 2010
Source:
Monash University
Summary:
Scientists have uncovered a quality-control mechanism that must take place for our immune system to subsequently effectively destroy harmful viruses and bacteria.

An Australian team of scientists has uncovered a quality control mechanism that must take place for our immune system to subsequently effectively destroy harmful viruses and bacteria.

The findings were published October 13 in the journal Nature.

The team solved a 15-year puzzle by working out the structure and function of a protein called pre T alpha that is essential in guiding the correct expression of various receptors expressed by T lymphocytes, white blood cells of the immune system.

These receptors, known as T cell receptors, recognise unique components of microbial pathogens.

Joint team leader, ARC Federation Fellow Professor Jamie Rossjohn, from Monash University's School of Biomedical Sciences, said that understanding the structure of pre-T alpha explains a fundamental step in T cell development and anti-microbial immunity.

"We showed that the pre-T alpha molecule not only assists in the expression of functional T cell receptors but it also allows two molecules to bind together, which alerts the T cell that this receptor is constructed properly, allowing the T cell to move to the next step in its development," Professor Rossjohn said.

Co-leader of the project Professor Jim McCluskey from the University of Melbourne said without T cell receptors we would be profoundly immunodeficient and therefore pre-T alpha plays an essential role in ensuring proper immunity.

"Additionally, there is some evidence that pre-T alpha may also be involved in some childhood leukaemias, so this new knowledge of how it functions may be important in diagnosis and treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukaemia," Professor McCluskey said.

The research findings were a culmination of a 6-year project that involved collaborative support from Australian scientists, use of the Australian Synchrotron, and funding from the National Health and Medical Research Council and the Australian Research Council.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Monash University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Siew Siew Pang, Richard Berry, Zhenjun Chen, Lars Kjer-Nielsen, Matthew A. Perugini, Glenn F. King, Christina Wang, Sock Hui Chew, Nicole L. La Gruta, Neal K. Williams, Travis Beddoe, Tony Tiganis, Nathan P. Cowieson, Dale I. Godfrey, Anthony W. Purcell, Matthew C. J. Wilce, James McCluskey, Jamie Rossjohn. The structural basis for autonomous dimerization of the pre-T-cell antigen receptor. Nature, 2010; 467 (7317): 844 DOI: 10.1038/nature09448

Cite This Page:

Monash University. "Crucial link in immune development and regulation unearthed." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 October 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101013131829.htm>.
Monash University. (2010, October 14). Crucial link in immune development and regulation unearthed. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 2, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101013131829.htm
Monash University. "Crucial link in immune development and regulation unearthed." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101013131829.htm (accessed October 2, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Might Not Be Out Of Control In U.S., But Coverage Is

Ebola Might Not Be Out Of Control In U.S., But Coverage Is

Newsy (Oct. 2, 2014) Coverage of the lone Ebola patient discovered in Texas has U.S. media in a frenzy — but does the coverage match the reality? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Rhode Island Child With Enterovirus Dies After Infection

Rhode Island Child With Enterovirus Dies After Infection

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 2, 2014) A Rhode Island child hospitalized with Enterovirus D68 has died of a bacterial infection, in what state public health officials say was an unusual and dangerous combination. Mana Rabiee reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
US Hunts Contacts of Ebola Patient, Including Children

US Hunts Contacts of Ebola Patient, Including Children

AFP (Oct. 2, 2014) Health officials in Texas on Wednesday scoured the Dallas area for people, including schoolchildren, who came in contact with a Liberian man who was diagnosed with Ebola in the United States. Duration: 00:55 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Study Says Losing Sense Of Smell Can Indicate Death

Study Says Losing Sense Of Smell Can Indicate Death

Newsy (Oct. 2, 2014) Researchers found elderly adults with a poor sense of smell are more likely to die within five years. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins